I am not usually a conspiracy theorist, but the decision of the National Audit Office to publish its long-awaited report on the Underground PPP and the collapse of Metronet tomorrow does suggest that it has been lent on from on high.
The report is expected to be critical of all sides – government, TfL and the private companies involved – but much of the blame for the whole debacle, as outlined in my book, Down the Tube, clearly rests with Gordon Brown and his then goffer Shriti Vadera, now raised to the House of Lords and a minister in his government. Yet, given that there will be some other rather pressing news tomorrow and the NAO press officers must have known this for some time as the date for the European and the local elections are not exactly sprung on them the whole thing stinks. it is inconceivable that they could be so incompetent as to not realise that any chance of coverage would disappear given the post election coverage. Or is it?
The NAO has been somewhat discredited since the John Bourn expenses scandal and this little episode will do nothing to restore its reputation.